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Lany'tjung story no. 1



Muŋgurrawuy Yunupiŋu


circa 1907 – 12 Apr 1979

Language group: Gumatj, Arnhem region

Artist profile

Bunuŋgu Yunupiŋu


circa 1917 – 1974

Language group: Gumatj, Arnhem region

  • Details

    Other Title
    Lany'tjung story, myth no 1 Laindjung stroy, myth no 1
    Place where the work was made
    Yirrkala North-east Arnhem Land Northern Territory Australia
    Media category
    Bark painting
    Materials used
    natural pigments on bark
    153.7 x 38.1 cm
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Gift of Dr Stuart Scougall 1959
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Estate of Munggurrawuy Yunupingu, courtesy Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Muŋgurrawuy Yunupiŋu

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection


    Artist information
    Bunuŋgu Yunupiŋu

    Works in the collection


  • About

    top: A Yirritja Ngärra ceremony was held near Caledon Bay. Three brothers and their two sisters were dancing when they called out the sacred name for fire. A fire, already burning, grew. One of the sisters tried to stop the fire but it spread. A vertical diamond pattern depicting wood divides the panel into two parts. The Yirritja diamond-patterned cross-hatching on the left represents the fire - black being ashes and red the glow of the fire. Dots in the horizontal bands at the top represent sparks while those in the lower bands represent flames. On the right are depicted the bones and ashes of the people burnt. One of the sisters is shown in a sacred shade surrounded by smoke.

    upper: The diamond pattern between the fire and the bandicoot is Muŋgurrawuy's Dreaming.

    lower: The ancestral Bandicoot is seen surrounded by grass and entering a hollow log to save itself from the fire. The dots are the bandicoot's footprints.

    bottom: The division between these panels represents the bank of a billabong and the watermark. Baru the crocodile is depicted in a billabong, the area of cross-hatching surrounding the crocodile is its nest, and the remaining cross-hatching represents räkay (eleocharis dulci), a highly nutritious species of lily. Dots represent bubbles from the crocodile as it dives under water.

    © Information provided by the artist

    Australian Art Department, AGNSW, 2000

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 5 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 3 publications

Other works by Muŋgurrawuy Yunupiŋu

See all 16 works

Other works by Bunuŋgu Yunupiŋu

See all 5 works